News and stories

Nonprofit Honors Williams, Carries out his Mission


ONA — For his 90th birthday, World War II Medal of Honor recipient Hershel “Woody” Wil­liams is getting a 501©3 in his honor.

His grandson, Brent Casey of Barboursville, said the family has launched the Hershel Woody Williams Medal of Honor Foundation in his grandfather’s honor. The foundation launches for Williams’ 90th birthday, which is Wednesday, Oct. 2, and it will carry out his vision of honoring Gold Star families.

“Gold Star Families are families that have lost one or more family members in combat,” Casey said. “It could be a mother, father, brother, sister or cousins. A lot of families have had service members that have paid the ultimate sacrifice and given their life in combat. … There’s a whole family that grieves.” Williams was honored at a 90th birthday celebration in Charleston on Tuesday, attended by a number of state dignitaries. At 1 p.m. on Wednesday, the foundation will dedicate the first Gold Star Families Memorial Monument at Donel Kinnard State Veterans Cemetery in Dunbar, W.Va.

Funding and installing the monuments is about a $60,000 project, which is why the foundation was founded, Casey said.

“Woody’s vision is to honor and pay respect to those individuals through a monument,” he said. “We have five more locations now, in Georgia, Texas, Virginia and Louisiana.” To donate or for more information about the foundation, email

Read original press release.